Title page for ETD etd-10122011-124534

Document Type Doctoral Thesis
Author Abu-Mahfouz, Adnan Mohammed
Email ami.mahfouz@gmail.com
URN etd-10122011-124534
Document Title Accurate and efficient localisation in wireless sensor networks using a best-reference selection
Degree PhD(Eng)
Department Electrical, Electronic and Computer Engineering
Advisor Name Title
Prof G P Hanke Co-Supervisor
Dr G P Hancke Supervisor
  • ALWadHA
  • design objectives
  • distance bounding
  • information-fusion
  • localisation systems
  • localised algorithm
  • location estimation
  • position
  • determination
  • smart references selection
  • wireless sensor networks
Date 2011-09-06
Availability unrestricted
Many wireless sensor network (WSN) applications depend on knowing the position of nodes within the network if they are to function efficiently. Location information is used, for example, in item tracking, routing protocols and controlling node density. Configuring each node with its position manually is cumbersome, and not feasible in networks with mobile nodes or dynamic topologies. WSNs, therefore, rely on localisation algorithms for the sensor nodes to determine their own physical location.

The basis of several localisation algorithms is the theory that the higher the number of reference nodes (called “references”) used, the greater the accuracy of the estimated position. However, this approach makes computation more complex and increases the likelihood that the location estimation may be inaccurate. Such inaccuracy in estimation could be due to including data from nodes with a large measurement error, or from nodes that intentionally aim to undermine the localisation process. This approach also has limited success in networks with sparse references, or where data cannot always be collected from many references (due for example to communication obstructions or bandwidth limitations). These situations require a method for achieving reliable and accurate localisation using a limited number of references.

Designing a localisation algorithm that could estimate node position with high accuracy using a low number of references is not a trivial problem. As the number of references decreases, more statistical weight is attached to each reference’s location estimate. The overall localisation accuracy therefore greatly depends on the robustness of the selection method that is used to eliminate inaccurate references. Various localisation algorithms and their performance in WSNs were studied. Information-fusion theory was also investigated and a new technique, rooted in information-fusion theory, was proposed for defining the best criteria for the selection of references. The researcher chose selection criteria to identify only those references that would increase the overall localisation accuracy. Using these criteria also minimises the number of iterations needed to refine the accuracy of the estimated position. This reduces bandwidth requirements and the time required for a position estimation after any topology change (or even after initial network deployment). The resultant algorithm achieved two main goals simultaneously: accurate location discovery and information fusion. Moreover, the algorithm fulfils several secondary design objectives: self-organising nature, simplicity, robustness, localised processing and security.

The proposed method was implemented and evaluated using a commercial network simulator. This evaluation of the proposed algorithm’s performance demonstrated that it is superior to other localisation algorithms evaluated; using fewer references, the algorithm performed better in terms of accuracy, robustness, security and energy efficiency.

These results confirm that the proposed selection method and associated localisation algorithm allow for reliable and accurate location information to be gathered using a minimum number of references. This decreases the computational burden of gathering and analysing location data from the high number of references previously believed to be necessary.

© 2011 University of Pretoria. All rights reserved. The copyright in this work vests in the University of Pretoria. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, without the prior written permission of the University of Pretoria.

Please cite as follows:

Abu-Mahfouz, AMI 2011, Accurate and efficient localisation in wireless sensor networks using a best-reference selection, PhD thesis, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, viewed yymmdd < http://upetd.up.ac.za/thesis/available/etd-10122011-124534/ >


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